Laser Program Implementation in the University of North Texas Health Science Center Environmental Health and Safety Department




Sadiq- Onilenla, Rasheedat
Adeyemi, Adebola
Otakore, Catharine
Moncus, Matthew
Nair, Maya


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Purpose: Safety is an important feature of a higher education system because it helps to prevent employee exposure to occupational and environmental risk while performing daily task. There is an existing safety program in the university which is made up of three crucial components: policy, training and auditing. Due to constant change in research experiments, there is a need for evaluation and improvement of the program to accommodate those changes. The purpose of this research is to improve the existing higher education safety program and accommodate changes in the manual with emphasizes on laser safety. Methods: Unscheduled laboratory inspection was carried out in all the laboratories in the key buildings on campus to examine safety practices. A couple of deficiencies were identified during the inspection. The data collected were compiled and analyzed using Excel software. Results: The result from the analysis and from reviews of policies from state regulatory agencies and safety manual from other higher institutions in Texas showed a couple of deficiency in the area of program specific manuals in the Laser safety area. There are a couple of laboratories that uses class 3b and 4 lasers. Currently the laser safety is covered under the general radiation safety program. Conclusions: The result of the study justifies the need for a Laser Safety Program. Adding the laser safety programs will help to improve the overall safety program of the institution and ensure compliance while working with laser. Based on this recommendation, a Laser Safety Manual was compiled for the proposed laser safety program. I recommend that periodic training should be conducted. Also, I recommend that routine audits of laser use activities should be conducted to assess the program.